Thierry Henry names his candidate for the Ballon d’Or.
Legendary Arsenal and Barcelona forward Thierry Henry believes Real Madrid star Karim Benzema should win the 2022 Ballon d’Or. This comes after the French forward netted twice in a 4-3 defeat for Los Blancos against Manchester City in the first leg of their UEFA Champions League semifinals tie.
Following the game, Thierry Henry, Jamie Carragher and Micah Richards were asked a series of questions on CBS Sports. When asked who they thought would win the 2022 Ballon d’Or, Henry had no hesitation in picking Karim Benzema. This is regardless of whether Real Madrid win the Champions League or not.
Karim Benzema’s form during the 2021-22 season makes him a deserved candidate for the award later this year. The 34-year-old forward has scored 41 goals and provided 13 assists in 41 appearances for Real Madrid this season.
Benzema has been excellent in the Champions League this season. The forward has scored 14 goals in the tournament, with nine of them coming in the knockout stages. He has also netted two hat-tricks in the Champions League against Paris Saint-Germain and Chelsea.
Real Madrid are on course to win the La Liga title this season. Carlo Ancelotti’s side are currently at the top of the league table, having amassed 78 points from 33 matches. As things stand, they are 15 points clear of second-placed Barcelona with five games remaining.
Karim Benzema has played a vital role in guiding Los Blancos to within touching distance of the title. The 34-year-old forward has scored 25 times in the league so far.
It is worth mentioning that Karim Benzema finished fourth in last year’s Ballon d’Or ceremony. He finished behind Lionel Messi, Robert Lewandowski and Jorginho on that occasion.
Who could rival Karim Benzema to the 2022 Ballon d’Or?
There are a few obvious candidates who could rival Benzema in the race for the 2022 Ballon d’Or. Manchester City playmaker Kevin De Bruyne and Liverpool talisman Mohamed Salah are also having a stellar season.
Manchester City, like Real Madrid, are chasing a league and Champions League double this season. De Bruyne has been a vital member for the Cityzens this season, having contributed 15 goals and 12 assists across all competitions.
The “Golden Ball” race will also heavily depend on how Liverpool’s season ends. The Reds are currently chasing an unprecedented quadruple where Mohamed Salah has starred. The 29-year-old winger has scored 30 goals and provided 13 assists in 43 appearances for Liverpool this season.
Liverpool’s success could also see Sadio Mane become a contender for the award. The 30-year-old forward guided Senegal to the Africa Cup of Nations title earlier this year.